Once upon a time the ‘fly ‘n’ flop holiday was the only type of holiday that appealed to a nation of sun worshiping, over-worked Brits. Now with many people choosing to take shorter but more frequent holidays we have broadened our horizons and are willing to ditch the sun lounger in favour of new experiences and activities. This has resulted in many native experts or artisans opening their doors to share their passions with holiday makers that want to feel a sense of exhilaration.
Tim Exeter is one of those experts who, with his wife have, turned their profession and passion into a unique “holiday” experience. I use the term “holiday” loosely as to some the word exercise and holiday should never appear in the same sentence; however as a fitness fanatic myself I’m wholly intrigued to find out more.
Tim, tell us exactly what Metasport is? Metasport was set up to improve sports performance and general health and fitness. It is a world class facility, where we work with sports competitors at all levels and abilities; from World Cup Winners in rugby and cricket to Paralympic participants and weekend warriors to nine year old tennis players – the range is broad. Additionally we help non-sporting people learn how exercise can be fun, benefit their health and help recover from injuries or pain which often comes from movement issues.
And how did the idea to set the business up come about? After I finished working for a Pro Rugby club here in Brive la Gaillarde. I had always wanted to have my own facility and it was a difficult decision whether to set up here in Brive or do so back in the UK. However, our children were at an important time in their schooling so it was better to stay here and let them finish their schooling. Plus we thought by basing the business in Brive we can add the holiday element to UK clients.
What differentiates you from other fitness style retreats? Firstly we only offer small groups or individual breaks; this allows a true quality personal experience and facilitates attention to detail. We have core programmes but they’re all tailored to suit the individual. Some want to work harder, others wish to shift the balance between exercise and relaxation, shopping, wine tasting etc.
Our approach and experience also sets us apart. We also take the same intelligent professional, detailed and well planned approach to training, recovery and nutrition as we use with world class athletes to ensure you get results, learn and enjoy the experience. This mind set is applied to clients who are taking up exercise for the first time, starting again or refining a well-established fitness / skill level.
I think another attribute that differentiates us is my level of expertise and vast experience at international level sport (over 23 years!) which I transfer to all clients. I know what works and what doesn’t!
Everyone is screened for their movement efficiency; also we discuss and set goals together based on this, plus their exercise and injury history.
I want all of our guests to learn why and how to exercise more efficiently and effectively, learn to move and function correctly, enjoy better health, reduce stress, minimise injury risk factors, get results.
What can a guest expect from their time with you? We offer 5-7 day breaks for fitness and the same for female only groups with Pilates sessions too. We mix up exercise sessions both at the centre and in the fantastic beautiful surrounding countryside; I am a firm believer in getting out in the fresh air not just working in the gym.
The exercise is varied including, walking/hiking, gym sessions, beach sessions, Pilates; we can even use the kayaks and stand up paddle at the lake nearby. Accommodation and food is all included, this ensures you eat the right way whilst here. All the food is homemade and fresh produce and we also include a dinner at a great local French restaurant. The guest house is right in the town centre so perfectly located to wander in for some French café culture, visit the boutiques in guest downtime.
What (if any) are the fitness requirements for guests to be able to participate? None. We screen everyone and only work in small groups so we are able to tailor the programmes accordingly.
Why is Brive a good place to base Metasport? It’s a beautiful medieval town, home of the French resistance with some great natural features that are ideal for outdoor training sessions.
And the local area – what else is there to do and see? It is really stunning, so we try to make sure that when we go for the hikes we go a little further afield to places like Rocamadour where monasteries were built into the rocks – it has to be seen! Furthermore there are lots of steps there so it’s a workout on its own. We are close to the Dordogne which is great to paddle down. It is just a beautiful area.
Metasport is a partnership between you and your wife Helen, what is Helen’s speciality? Helen is a Stott trained Pilates teacher in mat work and reformer (and is great mum having raised 4 children!) She ran her own studio in the UK before we moved over to Brive. She teaches on these breaks and with the visiting athletes too. Helen looks after the food and accommodation side also. She is an expert on wine, shopping and coffee, or at least she should be she certainly works hard on those disciplines!
The Metasport essentials:
Getting there – transport options: We offer free airport transfers if you fly into Brive (from London City or Stanstead) or into Limoges (from East Midlands, Liverpool, Leeds, Southampton and Bristol).
Costs: 4 to 5 nights from 900€ (flights not included).
Extras: Massages, more restaurants and wine tasting trips are also available and price available on request.
We have people who like to really change their physical fitness and health and stay for extended periods – again prices available on request.
Ideal For: Individuals, couples, groups of friends, corporate and teams (different accommodation options are available for teams).
Tim Exeter METASPORT ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE CENTRE
+33 (0)9 50 05 92 05 / +33 (0)6 31 09 85 00